American magazine publishers are in turmoil. Victor Ganzi, the president and chief executive of The Hearst Corporation has abruptly resigned after six years in his job, citing “policy differences” with the family trust that owns the company.
Hearst publishes some of the world’s most successful magazines including Cosmopolitan and Good Housekeeping. The company also owns newspapers, an interest in the sports channel ESPN and has been buying a variety of web properties.
The company is believed to have annual revenues of around $4bn. In the UK, Hearst owns the National Magazine Company.
Known as an extremely private, stable and cautious company, Ganzi’s sudden departure even shocked Hearst insiders. Frank Bennack Jr, who headed the company for decades will return as chief executive while a search for a replacement begins.
The Hearst bombshell came just 24 hours after the news that Jack Kliger, long-time chief executive of Hachette Filipacchi ‘s New York-based magazines which include Elle and Car & Driver was moving upstairs to chairman.
He is being replaced by Alain LeMarchand, vice president of operations at French parent company Lagardere Active Media.